Tuesday, 21 February 2012
Department of Justice, Equality and Defence
James Bannon (Longford-Westmeath, Fine Gael)
Question 555: To ask the Minister for Defence if he will provide comprehensive details on the future of the military museum currently located at Columb Barracks, Mullingar, County Westmeath, as the history of the 4th Field Artillery has great significance to the Mullingar area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9518/12]
Alan Shatter (Minister, Department of Justice, Equality and Defence; Dublin South, Fine Gael)
The museum collection in Columb Barracks is primarily associated with the history of the 4th Field Artillery Regiment. It is presently intended to make provision to house the museum in a suitable location in Custume Barracks, Athlone, which will be the new location for the 4th Field Artillery Regiment. This arrangement is in keeping with the normal military practice and tradition. The majority of the museum artefacts belong to the Defence Forces with the remaining being owned by private individuals. Some of these individuals have requested the return of their artefacts and these requests have been complied with. Any remaining artefacts owned by private individuals will be moved and stored appropriately in the museum at Custume Barracks, Athlone. I would like to advise the Deputy that I have received an approach from local representatives on this matter and in this regard I have asked a senior official from my Department to meet with them in the near future.